Woodbury native Eric Miller will make his first appearance for Minnesota United against the Vancouver Whitecaps at 1 p.m. Saturday at TCF Bank Stadium. Here is the full lineup:
Eric Miller, Michael Boxall, Francisco Calvo, Jerome Thiesson
Rasmus Schuller, Ibson
Miguel Ibarra, Darwin Quintero, Alexi Gomez
Bench: Matt Lampson, Wyatt Omsberg, Carter Manley, Maximiano, Collin Martin, Harrison Heath, Frantz Pangop
Miller came to the Loons in a deadline-day trade earlier this week with the Colorado Rapids. While he has yet to play a game this season, the outside back said Friday he was ready to go.
"The good thing about coming from Colorado is you train in altitude all the time," Miller said. "So you just naturally get really fit from that."
In all, this is a very different lineup for United, who has been hit with many injuries and also traded winger Sam Nicholson away for Miller.
"We've got 11 people injured,' coach Adrian Heath said. "Which is incredible because three or four weeks ago, we were talking about how lucky we've been with injuries. So that'll teach you not to open your mouth again."
Long-term injured are midfielder Ethan Finlay and Kevin Molino (ACLs), midfielder Sam Cronin (concussion) and left back Marc Burch, who just had surgery on a meniscus injury Friday. On the shorter term, right back Tyrone Mears continues to recover from a calf/Achilles injury. Center back Bertrand Owundi Eko'o and forward Christian Ramirez both have hamstring injuries. Forward Abu Danladi has an ankle sprain while midfielder Frantz Pangop has a rib contusion.
Heath said Pangop's injury was slight (hence why he is on the bench) and Owundi's hamstring tightness wasn't as bad as initially suspected. Holding midfielder Maximiano is also on the bench for the first time after fully recovering from his ACL injury from last summer.
Here is how Vancouver will line up: